The Wallabadah Manuscript - 1903

Recollections of the Early Days by William Telfer Jr.

The Early History of the Northern Districts of New South Wales.

Published by New South Wales University Press.


 [Spoken in broken English]






Page 55: Early History of the Liverpool Plains up to Date.


Then they have a tradition about the yahoo. They say he is a hairy man like a monkey plenty at one time, not many now. But the best opinion of the kind I heard from old Bungaree a Gunedah aboriginal. He said at one time there were tribes of them and they were the original inhabitants of the Country. He said they were the old race of blacks.


He was of Darwins theory that the original race had a tail on them like a monkey. He said the aboriginals would camp in one place and those people in a place of their own telling about how them and the blacks used to fight and they blacks always beat them but the yahoos always made away from the blacks being a faster runner mostly escaped. The blacks were frightened of them. When a lot of those were together the blacks would not go near them as the yahoo would make a great noise and frighten them with sticks. He said very strong fellow very stupid.

The blacks were more cunning getting behind trees spearing any chance one came near them. This was his story about these people. I have seen several stockman in the old times said they had seen this hairy man his feet reversed. When you thought he was coming towards you he was going away.


I had an experience myself of this gorilla or hairy man in the year 1883. I was making a short cut across the bush from Keera to Cobedah via top binger. It was a very hot day. I was on foot when after crossing those steep hills being tired camped for about two hours. This left me late the sun was only an hour high. Having to go about ten miles went about five miles. Getting dark came on a creek of running water had to camp for the night. Made a camp on a high bank of the creek lit a fire and made myself comfortable my dog laying down at the fire alongside of me.


I sat smoking my pipe. The moon rose about an hour after when you could discern objects two hundred yards away from the camp. I heard a curious noise coming up the creek opposite the camp over the creek. I went to see what it was about one hundred yards away. He seemed the same as a man but only larger. The animal was something like a gorilla in the Sydney museum of a darkish color and made a roaring noise going away towards top Bingera the noise getting fainter as he went along in the distance.


I started at daylight getting to Bells mountain about 9 o’clock Mr Bridger lived there stopped and had breakfast. I was telling them about the before. They said several people had seen the gorilla about there he was often seen in the mountains towards the Gwyder and about Mt Lyndsay. I was thinking how easy this animal could elude pursuit travelling by night camping in rocks or caves -


Page 56

- in the day time. After those blacks the Governors, so many out after them I do not think it wonderful those wild animals should escape being caught. As they are faster than the aboriginal by his own account. Some people think they are only myth but how is it they were seen by so many people in the old times 50 years ago.









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